The first night at Mustang Island I went for a mile and a half walk. The first half was easy, the wind was at my back, it was my first time exploring the beach, and I had Apple Music play Beaches of Cheyenne by Garth Brooks. For some reason that song had popped into my mind when DC had been telling me about the beaches at Corpus Christi.
Walking down the beach, I listened to it a few times, really listening. I hadn’t remembered much other than the title and the melody, yet decades ago, it was on the Garth CD I had. Essentially, at the end of an argument the singer tells her love she doesn’t care if he ever comes back. Ends up, he didn’t. What to do? Per the song, swim out into the ocean or is it to walk the beaches every night alone? It’s easy enough I think to find something you love so much that you would die for it. Another person, a habit, a lifestyle, security, money. Yet, what would you live for? Not really a deep thought of mine, just a segue into why Shameless happened to play just as I sat at the two hundred beach marker.
Well past dark the beach was empty yet for an occasional vehicle, during which I would turn on my flashlight to mark myself. As I sat and listened, I thought of Christyanna and nineteen ninety six and ninety nine seven. She was absolutely my first true love and I hers I believe. Completely committed in our love, forever and ever amen (while in youthful ignorance ignoring everything that amen was trying to tell me/us.) In any case, that was one of our songs, she had a few I was supposed to remember. And I may have, yet I don’t anymore except the one.
In fact, I had one (yes, yes, I know this is a tangent to a tangent of the segue, yet I’ll bring it back.. it’s only nine ten pm.
Where was I? Yes one song for each ex girlfriend (includes the one I married). Seven songs. I’m not sure if I can list them now, yet I chose to type this line to challenge my memory on the next: Shameless, Freshmen, She fucking hates me, Superman, ____, ____, Follow you into the dark. Missing two, the more recent ones. By recent, that song collection stopped a decade ago, along with power drinking. That playlist could kill a fifth.
So what is love? I’m not sure; yes, I can give you the right answer, God. God is love. The real answer? I’m not sure. Yet one thing I do know is that it is not to be hidden. That just doesn’t make any sense. It still doesn’t make any sense. In the sixth grade, a girl I liked, Heather, would pass notes to me in class at St. John Elementary and we traded phone numbers. Thirty year old details make everything fuzzy, yet I know we talked several times over days? a week? a month? Accurate estimation of time at this distance is impossible.
We were friends she said, yet only secret friends. She liked to talk to me, just as long as I didn’t talk to her at school. I can remember her face, yet I fear if I tried to describe it I would tarnish my own memory and not recognize her again if I saw her. I remember she told me her favorite song was On An Eagles Wings.(is it six thirty three? six forty five, maybe eight forty five in the song book) and that she would be married to it one day.. I wonder if she did every time I sing that song; I hope she found love.
Shameless, I think Garth kinda got it right, at least that part of it. Dances with wolves did too, for that matter. Not Kevin getting the girl, yet his Indian friend on the cliff at the end of the movie saying goodbye.
I wondered as I sat on the hard plowed beach sand road under marker two hundred, if I had ever loved God that much.
I woke up this morning, having sleep in the tent on the beach parking lot using just the mummy back as padding and just one blanket, it was a warm and comfortable night and my back, really, really needing that. Woke up, packed the tent/bed into the car, hit the restroom and went back to sit in my car, I sat there checking my phone trying to shake a bad headache. A bit of water and I realized it wasn’t a headache, just a bad weed hangover. Felt like I’d been ripping a bong all night and dabbed just a bit too much.
Three tiny bowls, maybe half a joints worth of real weed. Tolerance is weird, hair of the dog though. Just smoke another bowl.
Uh huh. and then I thought about this post and smoked a bowl of the fake weed. So maybe I did need a pot break. I wonder how many of my stories could have been different in the last few weeks, had I not been looking for pot or fake pot? Not to say that I’m going to quit smoking weed, yet headaches after the blunt last week and this morning.. I think I’ll have to blend this stuff with the point three hemp stuff, and taper back down to that. I think also, this is something that I needed to know before New Mexico.
Staying put is dangerous, I knew that, and yet, I was tempted to do just that. And then last nights post. Fine, stay. Write down why and say you’re going to do it, so that you have to do it. And it was hard to THINK with the headache and being tired and sandy. Not burned all all, I’ve been very careful, yet just warm rose kissed pre-tan all over, enough to want to sit in the car instead of the road trip rocker.
On the list, what is take off pending for. Was my current place best? Well, it was a good week. Maybe even a vacation of sorts, from my vacation, my avocation, my life, my death? Yesterday was a great beach day. Getting stuck, (ten fourteen, time to charge the laptop and cook a steak; eleven pm now plenty of time still,) The setup, thoughts of staying here, and even a little business.
It was a reasonable good day. Bag of weed from a friend, a long walk on the beach with a beautiful woman, an opportunity taken to turn a penny into a million dollar trinket, seeing my littlest sister.. what more could I ask for? A sunburn to remember it all by?
It’s been so long now I won’t remember all the details to my conversations with Kent, and some bits, I do want to keep for myself. Yet in a discussion about sin, and being on the beach, I had drawn an analogy for him. Nothing wrong with the sun, the sun is good, God created the sun, we’re built for it and we need it. And the sun feels good, really good, it is good. Yet, it is the same sun that gives you a sunburn if you stick around too long. A lot of sin is like that too, little alcohol, little pot, little gambling.. some things are entertaining, yet should not be a pastime.
This morning, maybe my last Kent conversation if I don’t see him again, we talked about how much harder it is to live the faith we talk about as compared to talking about it. Conversations are fun, putting into practice and slaying demons- dodging them first if we can- is more challenging, as it should be I suppose. Two types of people teach: those that can’t do and those that are still learning.
My mind had been made up by then, I was not doing well at the beach. The first five days were a lot of hard work (and fun!,) and I did many steps, yet few miles. The sand was great on my ankles and quads, yet I couldn’t walk firmly with full leg extensions there, hence the Walmart trips to walk while holding a cart. I’ve still been eating well, yet just notch under the previous weeks. My writing was more rushed, lacking details and tangent stories, almost always published right at midnight.
Yet, the beach was good. Very good; a lot of hard work, new friends, several lessons learned, and I did have a very good day right at the end. I am reasonably happy with the conclusion of the beach scene.
Off the beach by just after ten am, I ran the rest of my ‘city’ errands that I could recall.. Lowes, Autozone, Wendy’s, RV place, Altec Computers, and finally back home in Mathis, Texas. It really did feel like coming home, especially driving into the park and finding a spot. I picked sixty one – it had lots of sun for the panels. As I began to setup up camp, I keep looking at the space across the street, fifty nine. Catfish cove is completely empty, I’m the only camper in this section tonight.
After few minutes wresting with my awning in the wind, I stuffed it back in the car, drove back up to the ranger station and switched lots. That was easy. Now, I am in a great lot, maybe better than seventy eight. I set up leisurely and could have rushed to finish, yet I didn’t want to, I’ll be here at least three days and I’ve invited Kent to join me. His next stop planned was San Antonio, so it is on his way.
Tomorrow morning I have a telephone appointment with a Jackson County Deputy Sheriff, the one assigned to investigate the criminal complaint I sent in (thinking of it now, I never did get that photo in my email.) After that, I plan to re-read all of last week, step by step, as it was a good week, and though I recovered, there were a few errors in there that need to be fully debriefed and reflected upon.
I don’t think I’ll be in Mathis long, likely I won’t be here Sunday, so I’m going to stop by the Church before I go to make another donation.
Eleven forty three.
Time to rest.